Why Creative Arts?
The creative arts engage children through multi-sensory learning.
Multisensory Learning - Creative Arts in Early Childhood Education Children thrive on (and naturally respond to!) multi-sensory learning opportunities, such as the arts. Each of our five senses (sight, smell, sound, touch, taste) activates specific neurons in the brain. For young children, multi-sensory activities provide more learning opportunities than single-sensory activities because more of the brain becomes involved in the lesson. For example in a music class, children experience multi-sensory learning when they listen to and imitate animal sounds vocally or with an instrument, see the animals in the story, and then move around like them. Art activities can bring in the sense of smell and taste through edible art works, such as creating rainbows out of colored cereal or even using edible finger paints for the youngest learners. Plus, experiences that integrate several senses simultaneously are responsible for lasting impressions and greater retention.
Creative activities stimulate development in every area of the brain.
While multi-sensory learning engages children and provides greater retention, music and art education for children provides research-proven cognitive benefits as it timulates all areas of the brain, including: vision, balance, hearing, speech, behavior, sensation, cognition, movement, and emotion.
Art and music classes teach children to love learning and school.
Teachers and parents agree. We all want children to love learning and school. After all, it makes those early morning wake-up calls and afternoon lunch slumps a little bit easier. When asked: “What was your favorite thing about school today,” art and music consistently rank high on the list for young children. Why? It’s fun! As children grow beyond the early years, they carry that love of learning and school into the upper elementary years and beyond. Plus, the lessons learned in music classes can be applied throughout the day. Children who actively participate in creative arts learn teamwork, sharing, listening to and incorporating the ideas of others–and in turn learning the value of their own ideas, too! Plus,creative activities can help children learn self-regulation, the ability to regulate thoughts, feelings, and actions. All together, these skills translate into being ready to learn and success in school.
Grown-ups love the arts, too.
While we spend much time thinking about children in early childhood education (of course!), the grown-ups remain equally important. After all, children can tell when educators enjoy teaching. When teachers laugh and smile during the lesson, they model for students that learning is fun…and it is! For parents, the arts provide an easy way to support children’s education and get actively involved. This could mean listening intently as a child explains the colors of the rainbow on a painting brought home from school and then finding the perfect spot on the refrigerator to hang it. Or it can mean singing and dancing to the songs from music class or pretending to be favorite characters in the book from circle time.